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Boomer vs. Gen Z: These Are the Most Popular Subscription Services by Generation

Amazon Video or Apple TV+? Spotify or Amazon Music Unlimited? People are spending a pretty penny each month on subscription services, and there are some interesting generational divides.

By Eric Griffith

Food, shelter, and streaming: The basic necessities of life. We joke, but it’s not too far off base, since 96% of adults have at least one video-streaming service, according to WeThrift.com.

In a survey of 1,030 adults of varying ages, 80% had a music-streaming subscription, followed by meal-kit delivery services at 57%; beauty, health, and wellness at 51%; and whatever miscellaneous subscriptions didn’t fit a neat category at 56% (think Stitch Fix and VPNs).

When split by generations, boomers prefer Amazon Prime Video and iHeartRadio for streaming; millennials like a Hulu-and-Spotify combo; and Gen Z is into Apple TV+ and Amazon Music Unlimited (feels weird, but I’ll allow it).

Most “popular” doesn’t equal “most subscribed to,” however. Interestingly, the video-streaming service with the most subscribers across all ages was Prime Video—but that’s probably because it goes hand-in-hand with a Prime subscription for shopping, among other features. Overall, it was Prime Video at 72%, Netflix at 62%, Disney+ at 43%, Hulu at 34%, and HBO Max at 24%. The top combo for video streaming was Netflix plus Prime Video, for 48% of all respondents.

The report also breaks out the music services with the most subscribers ( Amazon Music Unlimited tops Spotify at 39% versus 35%, respectively), food subs ( Blue Apron barely wins at 17%), and health, beauty, and wellness (BeautyFIX at 14%). As for “miscellaneous,” the dogs have it: BarkBox’s 14% subscription rate was just ahead of CyberGhost VPN at 13%.

The scary part is how much we all spend, according to the chart below. (And the pricing is based on the base subscription plan for each service, so we’re probably paying even more.)

Food is the most costly subscription, period. But you gotta eat. What’s interesting is that the average $242 per month across all services is higher than that of the older generations, while the Gen Z crowd is spending $135 more than that per month on average, for a total of $377 per month ($4,524 per year). They don’t spend much more for video and music but almost double their costs for the other subscriptions they stack on.

You can read more details with the generational breakdowns, top pairings, and measures on the growth of subscriptions, in the full report at WeThrift.com.

Originally published at https://www.pcmag.com.




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